PGA Catalunya Resort, the stunning host venue of The European Tour Qualifying School Final Stage, has been announced as the eighth European Tour Destination, joining an exclusive network of golfing facilities.
European Tour Properties is The European Tour’s portfolio of world class venues, and PGA Catalunya Resort joins London Golf Club in England; Terre Blanche Hotel Spa Golf Resort in Provence and its sister venue Golf Club St. Leon-Rot near Frankfurt, Germany; Le Golf National in Paris, where The 2018 Ryder Cup will be played; The Dutch in Holland; Diamond Country Club in Austria; and Golf & Country Club Fleesensee, near Berlin in Germany, in an expanding collection.
Located an hour’s drive from the vibrant city of Barcelona and only 20 minutes from the Michelin-starred restaurants of Girona , PGA Catalunya Resort has long enjoyed a close and multi-faceted relationship with The European Tour, including hosting the Spanish Open on two occasions and The European Tour Qualifying School Final since 2008. The venue, already part of the European Tour Courses portfolio, will now benefit from the additional kudos and global recognition which comes with becoming a Destination.
Significant investments have been made in recent years, resulting in two spectacular layouts, the Stadium Course and the Tour Course – the former was voted the best course in Spain for 2012 and 2013 by www.top100golfcourses.co.uk – and superb practice facilities, including a 2,000 square-metre putting green and chipping area with bunkers emulating course conditions from around the world.
The 6,705-metre Stadium Course was designed by Spanish golf legend Angel Gallardo and Ryder Cup star Neil Coles. With its magnificent views of the surrounding mountains, stunning elevated tees and numerous water hazards, it is the jewel in the crown of the resort. In 2012, the resort completed significant upgrades to the award-winning course as part of a three-year partnership with The European Tour that will see the Qualifying School Final Stage held at the critically acclaimed resort until at least 2014. The Tour Course, also designed by Gallardo and Coles, is shorter but equally scenic and challenging in its own right, perfectly complementing its more daunting sister layout.
Last year also saw the opening of the world’s first SergioGarciaJuniorAcademy which focuses on nurturing young golfing talent for the future and introducing the sport to children with physical and learning difficulties through its “Golf Adapted” programme. The venue also boasts a modern and spacious clubhouse, offering excellent food and service, and a stylish onsite Melia hotel, which along with tennis, paddle and swimming facilities, contribute towards the resort’s overall appeal for family and golfing holidays.
The Resort has additionally won awards for its contemporary real-estate offering which comprises a low-density development of large golf-front home plots, luxurious family villas, a private enclave of semi-detached villas with extensive private gardens and swimming pool, as well as exclusive apartments adjacent to the clubhouse. Every home offers sleek and innovative architectural design, high-specification interiors and large Mediterranean-style terraces, some with breathtaking views over the Pyrenees.
Julio Delgado, Chief Executive of PGA Catalunya Resort, said: “To be selected to become part of The European Tour Properties exclusive portfolio, which comprises some of Europe’s leading clubs, is a true privilege and testament to the great legacy Angel Gallardo and Neil Coles have created here at PGA Catalunya Resort.
“Since conception, Angel and Neil’s passion, commitment and attention to detail to both the Stadium and Tour courses have proven pivotal to the headlines, accolades and rankings we have been fortunate to achieve,” added Julio Delgado.
“Spain is blessed with many great golf courses and it is an honour to be bestowed this new recognition by The European Tour, underlining the unique golf experience our team constantly strives to offer each and every PGA Catalunya Resort visitor.”
David MacLaren, Director of Property and Venue Development for The European Tour, said: “The relationship between The European Tour and PGA Catalunya has been a long and varied one and we have witnessed its journey from fledgling concept to a world class resort that is now acclaimed internationally. The design of the golf courses by Neil and Angel is marked by genius, and around the Stadium and Tour Courses a wide array of superb facilities has been developed. The European Tour Destination label is a fitting accolade and one which marks the enormous progress of the resort.“
PGA Catalunya Resort’s superb practice complex and demanding courses are particularly appreciated by the players who make it through to the six-round Final Stage of the Qualifying School each year and attempt to win a European Tour card.
Qualifying School Director Mike Stewart said: “PGA Catalunya has hosted the Final Stage since 2008 and has been a tremendous venue which has improved year after year.
“The players always rave about the condition of the two courses and the size and high standard of practice facilities. The hotel on site is another great asset.
“The Final Stage is a high-pressure week for all concerned, but being at PGA Catalunya Resort, which is close to both Girona and Barcelona airports and has everything at hand, alleviates some of the stress.”
PGA Catalunya Resort www.pgacatalunya.com
European Tour Properties www.europeantourproperties.com